Student Mobility

Korean Exchange Programme

Chloe Low Whye Kwan

Bachelor of Communication (Hons) Media Studies Dankook University, Korean Immersion Programme (KIP)

Spending almost a month in South Korea as a student exchange in Dankook University was one of the most memorable and exciting journeys I have had. I am very thankful that I was given this amazing opportunity to study in South Korea. I was able to experience life as a student there and to learn the language, cultures and lifestyles.

Dankook University has two campuses: One in Yongin and the other one in Cheonan. The campus in Jukjeon, Yongin was the one that I went to. When I arrived at Dankook University, I was so amazed by it because the campus is so huge, beautiful and clean, and the buildings are unique and modern. The dorm was also tidy and clean and it made me excited to unpack my luggage.

The second day was the orientation day and everyone had to sit through a Korean level test in both writing and speaking. The teachers will then arrange us into our classes respectively, based on our Korean language level. There are seven classes, which include three beginner classes, two intermediate classes and two advanced classes. In the Korean class, I was able to meet many new friends from different countries such as America, Taiwan, Japan, Sweden and many more.

During the first week of class, I had difficulty understanding the lessons as the classes were fully conducted in Korean. However, after the first two weeks, I had adapted to it and enjoyed the classes. The teachers in Dankook University are very friendly, helpful and kind. Some of the teachers can even speak Mandarin. They encouraged us to speak and write more in Korean, so that we could learn faster. Besides teaching, teachers would enthusiastically share and recommend to us the restaurants and places around our campus or in Korea that we could visit. Other than classes, some cultural activities were also prepared for the students. For examples, we visited the Seoul National Museum and Namsan Tower, cooked Kimchi, participated in a K-pop Dance class and enjoyed the Nanta Musical Festival. One of the most memorable activities was the Nanta traditional musical performance.

Besides teaching, teachers would enthusiastically share and recommend to us the restaurants and places around our campus or in Korea that we could visit. Other than classes, some cultural activities were also prepared for the students. For examples, we visited the Seoul National Museum and Namsan Tower, cooked Kimchi, participated in a K-pop Dance class and enjoyed the Nanta Musical Festival. One of the most memorable activities was the Nanta traditional musical performance.

Nanta is a non-verbal comedy show that uses knives, chopping board and other kitchen utensils that are transformed into musical instruments in the hands of the performers. Apart from classes and cultural activities, my friends and I also visited Myeondong, Hongdae, Bukchon Hanok Village, Gangnam and many other places in Seoul. The food in Korea is very delicious, but it is also very spicy and it can be tough for people like me who can’t eat spicy food.

I do not regret signing up for this programme as it has given me many valuable knowledge and insights, taught me a new language and cultures that I will never forget. I will definitely visit South Korea again in future.

Farahia Jaszlin Jasni

Bachelor of Psychology (Hons) Dankook University, Korean Immersion Programme (KIP)

“아, 이제 진짜로 끝이야…” (Ah- this is really the end) was what I said to myself when my one-month trip to Korea was about to end and the reality of going back home to Malaysia was starting to hit. Having the opportunity to study in Korea for a month was something I will always be grateful for, as I have gained and made so many colourful memories with new friends. One of the fondest memories that I will never forget is when I was in class; and it did not feel like we were studying at all. Everyone is there for one goal, which is to indulge themselves in the Korean culture, and learning Korean in class was something that all of us looked forward to! The classmates always had something fun to talk about and the teachers were energetic and interesting, which made the classes incredibly fun. One of the reasons why I wanted to go to Korea was to learn the language again, and I am glad that I did. It was enlightening to be able to learn something and apply it straight away!

It was such an experience making friends from all over the world. Some of the friends that I made were from Japan, China, Hungary, America, Taiwan, Bulgaria, and many more. All my life I only spoke English to people from different countries, so now, having to speak Korean with them was a whole new experience. It was fun talking about the differences and similarities between our cultures, and I have learned so much from them. I have even managed to promote Malaysia as their next holiday spot! Everyone there was just so eager to share things about their country and friendly enough to offer me a place to stay when I visit their country.

Bonding sessions with my friends were such healing experiences for me and I looked forward to going out with them and doing endless activities together. For instance, I had always wanted to go to Petite France, but it was too far to visit and thankfully a new friend that I made was able to go with me. As beautiful as the place was, going there with a friend to bond together was another treasured memory. I had so much fun exploring Korea with my friends. We went to the 노래방 (karaoke) almost every week, singing our hearts out, ate good food (which thankfully were cheap!), and got lost a million times together. It was tiring to go out every day, but when you were out with people that you value, it was all worth it.

Another thing about this trip that made such a huge impact on me was that I was able to be independent and explore a whole new country by myself. Although I had friends to go around with, it was the thrill of an adventure alone in a foreign country that was super exciting for me. I was never someone who would go out of my way and do things alone, but I took this opportunity in Korea to make it happen. It was an amazing experience to explore a different culture when you were alone as you get to do anything you want. I went shopping alone, took walks, and even went to the forest! The feeling of going on adventures alone and being able to find yourself again is wonderful.

This is all possible because of the great opportunities that were given to me, and I am ever so thankful to be able to experience this. Now I’m back in Malaysia, going to classes again, but fret not, I’ll definitely see you again Korea! 한국,다음에 또 봐~

Yohania Premita Gultom

achelor of Early Childhood Education Dankook University, Korean Immersion Programme (KIP)

When I received the email confirming that I got the scholarship to attend Dankook University’s International Summer School, I was overwhelmed by excitement. That happened roughly three months before my departure and I have always been that person whom everyone turned to when anything about Korea is mentioned in class. When I first started studying in HELP two years ago, I was so excited and happy to find out that HELP has been collaborating with many universities in South Korea and has been sending a lot of students for exchange programmes there. So, when I found out about the buddy programme, I decided to join and it was a good first step. Through the buddy programme, I got to make friends with a lot of Koreans, improved my Korean language proficiency and finally decided to join the short exchange programme. If the opportunity arises, I might even join the long term programme next time.

Back to my Summer School story, those 18 days were amazing and I cannot wait to talk about it and inspire more people to go and experience Korea themselves. Dankook University (DKU) is a well-known university in South Korea that has been running since 1947. It has two big campuses located in Jukjeon and Cheonan. The International Summer School 2017 took place in the Jukjeon Campus, which was more or less one hour away from the capital city Seoul. Out of the nine HELP students who participate in the Summer School this year, I travelled with Kim Ting on August 7, 2017. We met at KLIA 2, and were so excited about our departure. We were picked up by a DKU student called Park Won, and were brought straight to our campus dormitory. The Jukjeon Campus is a huge campus with a lot of buildings for different majors. And when I say huge, I mean, huge. You will need half a day to actually tour around the whole campus. Our dormitory building is called the Woongbi Hall, and our classes were located in the International Hall. Every morning, we had to walk for approximately 10 to 15 minutes reach our class. Well, everyone needs exercise, right?

Kim Ting turned out to be my roommate, and our room was on the third floor. The room was cozy with two single beds, two desks, two cupboards, a refrigerator, and also a bathroom. Just nice for the two of us. On the first day, we had our orientation programme and did our placement test. I was put in the advance class together with another HELP student called Farah. The class was just how I had expected it to be and it was a totally fun experience!

Since 2010, I have been learning Korean on my own, without any formal help. Basically, I managed to learn how the language works without really understanding its grammar. Therefore, I was really satisfied when I studied my textbook on the first day of class and felt that all my questions were finally answered. I was able to understand why some words or phrases were said or written the way they were. Moreover, the teachers were so fun and down to earth, and my classmates were amazing people. In my classroom, there were Malaysians, Hungarians, Bulgarians, Russians, Taiwanese, a lot of Japanese, and myself, an Indonesian. The most amazing thing was that we all conversed in Korean! It was so fascinating to me at first. They were all so good in Korean, and I really learnt a lot from all of them. In three weeks, we had created a strong bond between us, and had promised to visit each other’s country in the future.

Three weeks flew by so fast. Even though our campus and dormitory was located quite far from Seoul, there was a direct bus from our campus to Gangnam, the heart of Seoul. We could travel easily to Seoul with that bus or take the subway every day. And yes, that was what we did. We explored famous locations in Seoul like Hongdae, Myeongdong, Gangnam, Itaewon, Insadong, Bukchon Hanok Village, and so many more. By the second week, I literally felt like a local already. We also went on a Seoul Tour together with the entire group from the Summer School Session 2, and had an awesome dinner buffet in Namsan Tower.

Also, I got to meet some friends and buddies that I met in the Korean Buddy programme back in HELP. It was so nice to reunite with them and reminisce the good old days we had together when they were studying in Malaysia. Writing this article, I could not help but smile from ear to ear recalling the good days, good friends, and good times I had in Korea. I am so thankful to have been given this wonderful opportunity, and I believe this experience had added a lot of good values in my life. Thank you.

Koo Jin Hui

Bachelor of Communication (Media Studies) Dankook University, Korean Immersion Programme (KIP)

Being an exchange student to Korea for three weeks had definitely been one of the best experiences in my life as it was my very first time, visiting and studying in Korea. Although it was only a short summer programme, I have learned a lot of new things and also enhanced my understanding of the Korean cultures.

On the first day of orientation, we were required to sit for the Korean language course placement test. Korean classes are classified into four bands based on competence: Beginner one, Beginner two, Intermediate and Advanced. In a class, there were students from many different countries such as Japan, America, China and Indonesia. Moreover, teachers, who were in charge of the Korean Immersion Programme as well as Korean classes, were really friendly, humorous and professional. The fun and happy learning environment prompted students to have a very good relationship with teachers, which was crucial in helping us effectively improve our memory retention and motivation to learn. During my time in Korea, I turned to the coordinators, whenever I faced any problems. Most of the coordinators could speak at least four languages including Korean, Japanese, Chinese, and English and were very friendly and helpful. Dankook University also prepared a lot of cultural activities for the exchange students such as Seoul Tour, Nanta musical performance, Korean traditional music, Korean traditional dance, Amusement Park, ceramic arts, k-pop dance, and Korean movies.

Public transportation is very convenient in Korea. By using the T-money card, we could travel to most of the places by bus and subway. I would often lose my way during the first few days in Korea, due to the subway route which can be very complex and difficult for a new user. Fortunately, it did not become a serious problem to me, thanks to the assistance of some great smartphone apps. I enjoyed Korean food very much, they were very delicious and nice; but, they were still spicy for me. My spicy food tolerance level has definitely increased after living in Korea for three weeks as I was having spicy meals almost every day.

I am so glad that I had joined this exchange programme because the exposure and life lessons that I have gained from such an experience are invaluable. I will never forget everything and every moment that I have experienced in Korea.

Tan Song Ling (Karen)

Duksung Women’s University, Discover Korea at DWU 2017 International Summer Programme

The programme officially started on July 4, 2017 so I took a morning flight from Kuala Lumpur to Incheon, Seoul a day before. The flight took approximately seven hours as the weather was bad, and I met a fellow exchange participant called Pei Ying. After we arrived, we located the airport pickup service provided by our host university, Duksung Women’s University.

The next day, we were given an orientation where we were provided a brief introduction on Korea (transportation, history and culture) and a booklet containing the dormitory rules and regulations. Next, we were introduced to our buddies and the rest of the participants. After the introduction, we tried on the Hanbok, Korean traditional clothes, and learned how juniors are expected to bow and show respect to their elders in Korea.

In our first Korean class, we introduced ourselves to the class and learned HanGul. The university used innovative and interesting teaching methods that are different from Malaysia. Games (Yut Nori) and songs (Three bear song) were taught to help the students understand the subject better. On the weekdays, we had approximately 3.5 hours of classes and the studies were focused on daily conversation, verbs and money value. Once the classes were over, we went to the canteen to have lunch.

During the weekends, we hiked Bukhansan (Bukhan Mountain). We were able to walk to the mountain as it was located within 5 to 10 minutes from our university. On rainy days, we still went on hikes in the mountain with an umbrella or raincoat.

On the last day of our class and the programme, we had a photo session with our respective Korean teachers outside the classroom. In the evening, there was a closing ceremony and our certificates were presented to us. After the ceremony, we had chicken and soju at a nearby restaurant and shared a last dinner together.

All in all, I have many great memories in Korea. For me, it was more than learning the Korean language and its culture as I was also exposed to the cultures of various countries such as Spain, Germany, Japan, China, Indonesia and Thailand. It was truly a very successful programme. This may only be their second time organising such an event, but the organisers were very dedicated and hands-on in their approach. I would like to give a big shout-out to our host, HELP University and Ms Dot for giving us this opportunity. There are no better words for me to express myself except that I LOVE KOREA! I LOVE DUKSUNG AND HELP UNIVERSITY.

Lee Janice

Bachelor of Psychology Kyungsung University, International Summer Camp

“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.” – Marcel Proust.

As a K-pop fan and the daughter of a K-drama fan, I have always been interested in Korean culture. My summer exchange experience with Kyungsung University in Busan, Korea has been an eye-opening one because I got to know and experience the ‘real’ Korea and not like the one displayed in dramas. I got to learn about Korean, visit traditional places and also experience the life of a student in Korea.

Visiting Korea was like my personal trip of “first time” memories. For the first time, I learned how to make my own ceramic pottery, learned taekwondo, went on a cruise and tried wearing the Hanbook (traditional Korean clothing). All these experiences were so fun and gave me a deeper understanding about traditional Korean culture. I will now let the photos below tell their story of my first time in Korea.

We had a fun time discussing the design and making the pottery. After that, we visited the pottery museum and got to see the biggest ceramic pot listed in the Guinness World Record. We got back our handmade pottery as a souvenir during the closing ceremony.

We had a team of Korean taekwondo players, who performed regularly in international events and they taught us some basic moves in taekwondo. It was a sweaty but happy experience.

The scenery was really stunning and we bought some prawn crackers to feed the seagulls.

It was a really pretty and holy temple. I liked it a lot because it was bigger than most temples in Malaysia. It was situated next to the sea and the scenery was really awesome.

The Gaya dynasty was amazing with its magical and beautiful story. It unveiled a part of Korea which I didn’t know about.

This is Bibimbap served in the cafeteria. It only cost 3300 won, which is around RM 12.75 and it tastes really good.

“Wherever you go becomes a part of you somehow.” – Anita Desai.

Korea is truly an amazing place to explore and my visit here has become a part of me. Travel is a good way to reflect on yourself and I have learned a lot from this experience. Already missing the spicy food!

Tunku Maisarah Iman binti Tunku Farahat Hussain

Bachelor of Psychology Dankook University, Korean Immersion Programme (KIP)

South Korea is amazing, from its food to people, everything about South Korea has been nothing but amazing. Being able to stay there for three weeks and immersing myself in their culture was an experience I will never forget. Having a chance to be away from home to learn more about the Korean culture, language and lifestyle has opened my eyes to a whole new world. It also enabled me to be independent. It would not have been easy without the people around me. Being able to attend classes with people from all over the world was an eye-opening experience. Even though we were from different countries, the language brought us together. The teachers who taught us were funny and made the class fun for all of us. It made waking up early to attend the classes something I look forward to every day.

I was in awe of the beauty of the campus, though it may be quite far away from Seoul. It really is a beautiful campus. I had been to Korea a couple of times, but it was different than all the rest as I had classes to attend to and I was also travelling alone. I also got to see new things and try new food, thanks to all of my friends who were willing to try everything with me.

One of my favourite places was Hwasung, in Suwon. It resembled a mini Great Wall of China in the midst of a busy city. Another place that I have always wanted to visit was called Sky Park. Though the days were hot and humid, the view was beautiful. I have heard people say that the view in Sky Park is nicer during the colder seasons, but it was still beautiful when I saw it. Being on top of the mountain overlooking the Han River was an experience itself.

Being able to spend my birthday in Seoul was really special. Even though I was away from my home and family, it was actually not as bad as I thought it would be as most of my friends spoiled me. The experience has been both both nerve-racking and wonderful. I wish I could turn back time to go through it all over again.

Chong Sook Min

Bachelor of Business (Accounting) (Hons) Pai Chai International Summer School (PAISS) 2017

 

Now that I have completed my first student exchange programme, I would like to share my experience with you. Instead of staying at home or studying on my own, I decided to fill my August semester break with a meaningful exchange experience to South Korea, for which I am very pleased with the decision that I made. This was my first time flying alone and I had to be independent as I will have to be away from home. Fortunately, I met many people who treated me kindly during my stay at South Korea. The locals that I met were kind enough that they would not mind guiding you when you got lost on the street or lend you a hand when you could not understand the Korean menu.

Pai Chai University is located in Daejeon, which is the central region of South Korea, and the strategic location of the city made it easy for us to travel around the country. The summer school programme had participants from various countries including Algeria, China, Germany, Japan, Malaysia and Taiwan. There were cross-culture exchanges every day and we were exposed to the diverse cultures. Three weeks was a very short period, but we all got to know each other and everyone was there to exchange their life experiences. A welcome orientation and big dinner was prepared upon our arrival to help the participants settle in and give us a sense of belonging. There was also an ice-breaking activity held on the second day such as an Athletics competition. I was extremely happy and proud that my team managed to win first place.

To introduce us to the local cultures, PCU organised a lot of cultural experience opportunities such as K-Pop activities (PSY concert in Daejeon) and Korean language classes almost every morning. Some evenings, we ventured into Daejeon City with the PILOTs (Korean Buddies). Besides that, we also visited a Hanok Village in Jeonju, Appenzeller/ Noble Memorial Museum, Kyeongbokgung Royal Palace, SM COEX Atrium in Seoul and EVERLAND Caribbean Bay Water Park in Yongin City. We were able to learn more about South Korea through these field trips. It amazed me to see pockets of traditional architectures within the modernised city as well as experience the incredibly convenient public transport, superb internet speed, and a variety of Korean food. South Korea is also a great place for cosmetic lovers.

Apart from the outings, there were other activities organised by PCU such as the football matches and Taekwondo performance conducted by a professional team. We were able to participate in the taekwondo lesson and learn some basic taekwondo styles from the professionals such as smashing wooden pieces. PCU also provided us with the taekwondo outfit that we used during the lesson. Furthermore, there were also Korean studies lessons conducted by foreign lecturers who are knowledgeable about Korean culture. They introduced us to the contemporary and traditional cultures of Korea. We also learnt about the Gayageum, a Korean traditional musical instrument.

Last but not least, I would like to express my appreciation to HELP University, especially to Miss Dot and Marsha who provided me with a lot of helpful information. I would also like to extend my gratitude to Mr Ryan, the director of Pai Chai University as well as the PILOTs who gave me plenty of guidance and were extremely thoughtful to me. Of course, my beloved family also showered me with support. Indeed, time flew by so quickly but I will always treasure the unforgettable hours that I spent in South Korea. I thoroughly enjoyed my time at PAISS 2017 and it was truly memorable to me.

Wong Kim Ting

Dankook University, Korean Immersion Programme (KIP)

A Trip to Kimchi Land

Anyeonghaseyo! My name is Kim Ting, a participant in the Korean Summer Exchange Programme 2017. First of all, I would like to thank HELP University for giving me the opportunity to join this Korean exchange programme with a full scholarship. Although it was my second visit to Korea, I had so much anticipation and excitement for everything throughout the journey.

I went to Dankook University for the session two exchange programme, together with my two friends from HELP University. We were not familiar with each other in the beginning but we became really good friends after getting to know each other better during this programme. I felt grateful to have them with me for the three weeks.

Besides, I got to make many friends from different countries in the Korean class. They were respectively from Japan, Taiwan and China. One of them, a girl from Japan, was my desk-mate in the class; she is a very cute, nice and friendly person.

I also got the chance to meet the Korean friends that I first met when they were in Malaysia. They were very kind and helpful as they planned the day and brought me to all the places that I wanted to go. Meeting them in Korea was definitely a highlight!

I really enjoyed the trip in Korea; it was an unforgettable memory to me. I like everything in Korea – their culture, language, food and people. Meanwhile, it was definitely a really good chance for me to learn and improve my Korean language.

It is true happiness, when you are doing the things you love.

Chow Pei Ying

Bachelor of Business (Finance) (HONS) Duksung Women’s University, Discover Korea at DWU 2017 International Summer Program

First of all, I would like to express my gratitude to HELP University for granting me the opportunity to participate in the programme. The exchange programme started on the July 3, 2017 and ended on July 23, 2017. The programme includes an in-class Korean language learning program as well as outdoor field trips.

While the in-class learning programme provided us with fundamental knowledge of Korean language, stepping outside of the class allowed us to experience assimilating into Korean culture. We were taught Korean martial art, Taekwondo at the Arirang centre, hiked Bukhansan and visited Gapyeong beach and Insadong’s Ssamzegil for sight-seeing.

Besides, I got to make many friends from different countries in the Korean class. They were respectively from Japan, Taiwan and China. One of them, a girl from Japan, was my desk-mate in the class; she is a very cute, nice and friendly person.

Hence, I would like to thank Duksung Women’s University for the well-organised programme, from providing well-equipped accommodation to conducting Korean language classes and numerous field trips. During the three weeks, I met friends from different backgrounds and cultures. I truly appreciate the memorable moments with all the international friends during this three-week programme. Our time together may not be long, but our friendship is as strong as steel. For future students who are looking into exchange programmes, “just do it, don’t let your doubts and anxiety cloud your judgment. You’ll never regret it!”

Lau Sie Lin

Bachelor of Education in TESL Dankook University, Korean Immersion Program (KIP)

I am beyond grateful to have had this chance to take part in the Korean Immersion Program (KIP) at Dankook University. The three weeks I spent there may be short I did get to enjoy, learn and immerse myself in the beautiful Korean culture.

Everything in Korea was so convenient. You could easily use a card to make payments at any shop or small stall by the roadside. Their transportation system was impressive and it was a big help for us to get around. Taxi fare was relatively expensive in Korea, therefore, subways and buses became the best choice for us to get from one place to another. You could go anywhere with subways or buses with the help of a T-money card (we were provided with the card by our university). There were also Mandarin and English-translated signboards around the subway and in the broadcast of the stations itself. There were also many convenience stores in Korea, such as GS25, CU and 7-11, which sold different kinds of food and drinks. There were cooking machines and microwaves at these stores which made it convenient for people to heat up any food they bought. The food that was sold in these convenience stores were also cheaper in comparison to other places. The convenience store located at our dormitory lobby became our first stop in the morning for breakfast before going to class.

Our classes in Dankook University began from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. during weekdays. There were three different levels of classes for students – Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced. The teachers of the Korean language classes were all very friendly and kind. All of the classes were conducted in the Korean language only, which helped us learn the language quickly. However, in some of the beginner classes, simple English or Mandarin would be used to guide those who could not understand Korean at all. They were all very helpful and caring towards their students. Some of the teachers even gave us recommendations of restaurants or places where we could shop and visit. We also received much help from the committee members of the ISS Team from the International Department.

Students were also given freedom to choose any after-class cultural activity that they were interested in, however, some of the activities required a certain payment or fee. One of my favourite activities would be getting to watch ‘Nanta’, a non-verbal musical in which the actors use only tools to make sounds and music while focusing on the usage of body language and facial expressions in the whole performance. Dankook University also provided a Seoul tour for the exchange program students and we got to visit the National Museum, Sejong Square and also Namsan Tower.

Because our classes would usually end at 1 p.m., we would then spend our free time visiting Seoul or some other famous landmarks by public transport. We would also take this time to do some food hunting and shop in the city. There were buses around the campus that depart from the university to Jukjeon Station, Gangnam station and also to Seoul Station. From each bus station, we could then take the subway to different places in Seoul, which was very convenient for us. We did not have to worry about getting lost as some of the famous tourist spots had volunteers in red uniforms to help guide tourists.

One of the best parts of this trip was enjoying the food in Korea. You can expect Korean food to be delicious wherever you go – from the roadside stalls to restaurants and cafes. Although the food can be quite expensive, their portion size was usually large enough that we could even share it with friends. Korea also favours the arts as their streets are nicely decorated with murals, sculptures or some artistic lights design.

During our three-week stay, my friends and I managed to go on a short trip to Busan, the second largest city in South Korea. We travelled to Busan by train (Mugonghwa and KTX), which took about two to five hours for us to arrive. In comparison to Seoul, Busan was less busy and crowded. Our Busan trip was planned and toured by our ESC17 Korean buddies from HELP University. They brought us to night markets, traditional markets, cultural villages and also the famous seaside and beach in Busan. We also got to try out the traditional and famous foods in Busan.

This student exchange program in Dankook University was definitely a brand new and valuable experience for me, as I was able to immerse myself in the Korean culture. I learned so much from this program, from the people I met, the food that I tried, the places that I visited and the culture that I experienced. It will remain as a precious memory for me.

Yap Shin Yee

Bachelor of Psychology Kyungsung University, International Summer Camp

It was an unforgettable summer programme as I still can’t believe that I had spent three weeks in such a beautiful university that was located in Busan. I’m so glad that I could join this Korean summer exchange programme in HELP University. I am also very thankful to Kyungsung University for organising such a great camp for international students. This was my very first time taking a flight to a foreign country and I gained a lot of first time experiences in Korea.

I recalled my first time experience eating silkworm pupa. I hesitated for a long time and was curious about what a silkworm pupa would taste like until I finally took the first bite. The skin was crunchy and it was so juicy inside. I remember how horrified some of my friends were when they saw me eating it. (HAHAHA. Cultural shock!) If you want to try it when you travel to Korea, you can usually find it in some street stalls, or served as a side dish in some Korean restaurants.

Taking a 45-minute cruise tour to explore the Haeundae beach was also a wonderful experience. Although I felt a bit dizzy when I got into the cruise, it was totally worth it when I had the chance to see this amazing sea view. Crystal clear sea water accompanied by flying sea mews up high in the sky, it was an unforgettable eye stunning view in my mind. When the cruise moved, you could even stand up and feed the sea mews. Personally, I would recommend that you sit still in the cruise if you are feeling nausea.

Ceramic pot making was another interesting story. Surprisingly, the texture of the clay was just like Playdoh. Basically, we used our bare hands to shape the clay to the shape that we wanted. Once we finished shaping the pot, we used certain tools to stamp some flower logos on the pot with our names written on the bottom of the pot. Ceramic pots shrink 20% smaller after the burning process and our teacher advised us to shape the ceramic pot bigger than our imagined size. It was not perfect, but it was my very first handmade Korean ceramic pot. I was so excited to bring it back to Malaysia and show it to my relatives.

I spent a meaningful three weeks in Busan, but I still feel as though time passed too quickly. In these three weeks, not only did I learnt about Korean culture, but I also visited many interesting places in Busan. Busan is a lovely place with many beautiful beaches and sceneries, as well as a place for great tasting fresh seafood. If I could choose to revisit any places in Korea, Busan will always be my first choice.

Last but not least, I would like to say thank you to HELP University and Kyungsung University for their generosity and for offering me this opportunity to experience Busan. I will definitely miss Busan and Kyungsung University, as well as all the people that I have met there.

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